Viticulture Testing - A One-Stop Shop | Hill Laboratories - NZ

Viticulture Testing - A One-Stop Shop

Viticulture Testing - A One-Stop Shop

Date: 13 Aug 2020
Author: Hill Laboratories

As part of our commitment to innovation and growth, we have expanded our viticulture testing capability with the acquisition of the assets of Vine Testing Laboratory (VTL), a specialised ELISA laboratory able to diagnose Grapevine leafroll-associated virus 3 (GLRaV-3). An agreement to purchase the assets of VTL was reached earlier this year between Ormond Nurseries and Villa Maria Estate, as part of Ormond Nurseries’ purchase of Villa Maria’s nursery. 

This new specialised service will be provided from our Blenheim laboratory that is already focused on providing testing services such as soil, petiole and residue testing in finished wines for the wine and viticulture industries. We look forward to providing fast, accurate reporting and industry-leading turnaround times to New Zealand grapevine nurseries and for any grape growers that are wanting to understand GLRaV-3 levels in their vineyards. With our state-of-the-art instruments and the expertise available in our lab, we expect to offer virus testing results in just five working days. 

The Grapevine leafroll virus (GLRaV-3) is one of the biggest threats to the wine industry globally, as vines infected with the virus show decreased ripening potential and yield. New Zealand grapevine nurseries all routinely test for this virus as part of the certification process for the New Zealand Winegrowers Grafted Grapevine Standard. 

As part of the VTL acquisition, we also intend to invest in research and development of wine sector testing methodologies and are also looking at expanding our services to include testing for Grapevine leafroll-associated virus type 2 and 1, in addition to type 3. The acquisition of VTL will be completed on 1 September 2020, and the laboratory will be up and running in time for the 2021 testing season. 

To find out more about our current wine testing services, visit our website or contact our Food & Bioanalytical Client Services Team through 

Pictured left to right, Riaan Botha (Market Sector Manager, Food and Bioanalytics) and Hill Laboratories CEO Dr Jonno Hill.